|Reflecting at Dzur Mountain
Author: F Maniac PM
Vlad reflects on some of his friends while he has a few minutes to relax at Dzur Mountain....Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Angst - Words: 1,332 - Reviews: 8 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 1 - Published: 12-12-04 - Status: Complete - id: 2170301
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: Dragaera and all of its constituent parts and characters belong to Steven Brust.This story contains minor spoilers if you have not read Issola. So be warned.
Reflecting at Dzur Mountain
"Why don't we just go now?"
I was in the living area of Dzur Mountain, where I'd sat many times before—one of many hollowed-out chambers in a giant black rock. It was quite nice, actually. For all of its austerity, the place was rather comfortable. The room was dimly lit as always, illuminated by several torches along the walls and a few candles here and there. There was barely any decoration to be found, save for a small bookcase to my right along the far wall, and another along the wall directly to my left. Sethra was sitting across from me several feet away, looking relaxed and confident. And Morrolan was standing, unmoving with arms folded, in front of the small bookcase along the far wall. He appeared to be examining the reading selection. I wondered if he'd read any of the books.
Sethra turned her head towards me, calmly regarding me with her dark eyes.
"Are you in a hurry?"
"No, not particularly," I said, trying to look and sound as calm as she did.
"We are waiting for the appropriate time."
"Right. I just don't really see—"
"We did just discuss this. You ought to know why."
I held her gaze for a moment. Actually, I didn't, so I just nodded and shrugged, and looked down at the book that was resting on my leg. It was small with a leather cover and a silver tassel attached to the spine. Something about the workings of pre-Empire sorcery. I was completely lost. Sethra's undead gaze wandered elsewhere in the room.
A few seconds later, Tukko, Sethra's servant, silently entered through a door from somewhere behind her chair. He was carrying a silver tray that held three short round glasses containing a brownish liquid. He shuffled over to us, his face making strange contortions, and offered the tray to me and then to Sethra. When we'd each taken a glass, he shuffled over to Morrolan. Morrolan uncrossed his right arm and silently took the last glass, nodding almost imperceptibly at Tukko. As Tukko made his way out of the room, I sampled the liqueur. It contained a hint of mint and some unidentifiable spices. Strong, but very good. Loiosh, who was sitting complacently on the arm of the chair, stirred and adjusted his wings.
I glanced over at Morrolan, who with his black cloak and black hair was nearly invisible against the far wall. His elbows and the hilt of Blackwand were just visible around the edges of his cloak. He'd barely moved and hadn't spoken in the last five minutes. As my thoughts began to wander, I vaguely wondered how he'd been feeling since Teldra had vanished for good….well, so to speak. He certainly wasn't one to show a whole lot of emotion, and he hadn't said anything about her in the few brief conversations that we'd had since then. I certainly wasn't going to bring it up. He'd actually seemed more somber than usual, if that was possible. While Teldra wasn't exactly gone for good….well, I just wondered how he had taken it. He had many associates, but not many close friends. I'm sure he usually spent a lot of time alone, but now he would be spending even more that way.
As I thought about it, I found myself reflecting on the fact that each of us spent most of our time by ourselves.
Actually, that wasn't quite true. He was here at Dzur Mountain fairly often. Morrolan and Sethra had been friends for a long time.
I glanced back at Sethra. She was staring absently at some corner of the room, and although she looked perfectly at ease, she was no doubt calculating and analyzing, probably working through some arcane sorcerous formula that was too complicated for anyone else to understand, save the Necromancer.
Of course, she was wearing all black—a long-sleeved tunic that was tucked into some long pants, which in turn were tucked into black boots that extended half way up her calves, and a leather belt upon which Iceflame was somehow attached. She was sitting with her left hand resting casually on her left leg with various fingers making occasional movements, and was leaning her chin on her right hand, index finger extended, head slightly tilted. Her right leg was crossed over her left, and her right foot was swinging subtly back and forth, which was slightly interesting. It looked like something was on her mind.
Tukko was the only other person that I'd seen around here. I couldn't imagine being alone in this place for thousands of years.
My eyes moved back to the book although I wasn't seeing anything on the page. My thoughts continued to follow their own path, bringing fuzzy images and bits of conversations from times long past through my mind. An image of climbing some sinister, hidden stairway in this place slid through my mind...Following Morrolan up here, on my way to meet Sethra for the first time...
"How much farther are we going?"
"Not very far, I believe. Are you tired?"
"A little. Are you a regular visitor here?"
"Yes, of course. Sethra and I see one another quite often."
I must have been making a strange expression as I was looking absently down at the book. Loiosh shifted slightly on the arm of the chair.
My mind snapped back to reality and the quiet of the dark room. I looked up, and saw that Sethra was peering coolly at me from under her long, dark eyelashes. Her foot had stopped moving.
"Is something on your mind, Vlad?" Glass and satin, I thought…
I blinked once or twice, looked down at the book and then back at Sethra.
"No…just lost in thought. Nothing important."
She nodded once, and appeared to shrug with her eyes. I quietly cleared my throat and took another sip of the liqueur, which I'd managed to forget that I was holding. I glanced briefly at Loiosh as I was pretty sure I caught a hint of him chuckling to himself, and I raised an eyebrow at him.
Morrolan still hadn't moved.
"Aliera will be joining us shortly," Sethra said, with her typical liquid timbre.
I looked back at Sethra. It was my turn to nod once, so I did.
Sethra was still regarding me with an unreadable expression, so I pretended to examine the small glass in my hand until she looked away.
Several seconds later, there was a barely-audible whoosh of displaced air as Aliera teleported into the room, one foot out to the side, her arms folded like Morrolan's, and in the midst of a yawn. Inwardly I rolled my eyes.
Morrolan turned and he and Aliera acknowledged each other, showing that he was, in fact, still living. She nodded to Sethra and then to me.
"Let's go," she said with her usual abruptness. Finally.
Sethra and I stood, and we began moving towards the door.
Aliera had already begun stalking off with the alacrity that only she possesses.
Loiosh landed on my shoulder as I started to step towards the door. Out of the corner of my eye I thought I saw Morrolan's and Sethra's eyes meet for the briefest of moments. I thought I detected a flash of meaning in their expressions.... Or maybe it was just the liqueur.
I pretended to adjust a dagger, and pretended not to notice.
This is the first thing like this that I've ever done, so be kind if possible. :)
Why is there so depressingly little Dragaera fan fiction out there??